Birds Being Birds

Early migrating spring warblers and other birds are moving through the area. With that in mind we’ve spent a fair amount of time in recent days looking into bushes and up into trees. Yellow-rumps have been found almost everywhere, but for yellow-throated warblers we had to look into the very top of tall sycamore trees making a good picture a challenge. Along with early…

The Other Florida Herons

This post covers the other herons seen in Florida. Unlike the Little Blue and Tricolored which are most commonly seen in Florida and the gulf states these other herons can be seen further north. In our case as far north as Ohio. In fact In our travels we have even observed Green and Great Blue Herons north of Ohio in states such as Michigan….

They Eat Skunk???

This was supposed to be a post about spring wildflowers and migrating warblers but the other day, while I was bicycling with a friend, my wife was busy exploring the park near our home. What she discovered goes against everything I would have thought possible. . A Red Tailed hawk eating a skunk! . I case there are any doubters, “Maybe it was someone’s…

Florida’s Pelicans and Spoonbills

Almost no matter where you travel the diversity of birds found can’t help but inspire a feeling of awe. For us this feeling has been heightened by the many hours spent observing bird behavior in their various habitats. To the casual observer many birds will be seen and then quickly dismissed with the thought, “another little brown bird” or if it’s something spectacular, “that’s…

An Early Spring Paddle

In recent days bird activity betrays the fact that from a distance the landscape is still more reminiscent of a snowless winter day than spring. Hearing but not seeing any first of the season migrating warblers we’ve nonetheless been entertained by other birds engaged in spring preparations or just passing through. . It’s not just the sight and sound of birds, but the call…

Two Small Herons

Over the years watching birds has become a meditation. Something that draws us out of ourselves into the embrace of a larger sacred world and a heightened awareness of the importance of, and kinship with, all life. . Two birds that have enchanted us, ever since we started our yearly winter pilgrimage from central Ohio to Florida, are the Tricolored and Little Blue Heron….

A Feast For The Gulls

Usually this time of the year in central Ohio we’re busy looking for the earliest spring wildflowers such as the uncommon Snow Trillium. . But we also walk along the local reservoirs (Griggs and O’Shaughnessy Reservoir) hoping to see migrating waterfowl. Recently we weren’t disappointed when three inches of rain shocked area waterways resulting in thousands of dead or dying shad. It was a…

Black-necked Stilt

The winters in central Ohio are usually not harsh but their dreariness more than makes up for it. Now, being in a position where we don’t have to, we see little reason to endure the gray dampness so we look to sunnier and warmer climes. Florida is usually our destination and the two months spent in the various state parks end up being a…

What Are They Eating?

We love watching the behavior of the birds at our front yard feeders. Each species seems to have a slightly different style for relieving a feeder of it’s contents. Chickadees fly off to a nearby branch with just one seed, then, while holding it between feet and branch, devour it before returning for another. It would seem that this method expends more energy than…

A Stage Perfectly Set

On a long urban hike to work off the transgressions of the holidays, the morning was dark, cold, and wet, with light rain trying to turn to snow, and wind periodically gusting to remind one that it was colder than originally thought. Heading for the park through quiet residential streets, I wondered if any of the small friends that often inhabit the trees and…